Best Places to Golf in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan

When you think about the pristine white beaches of beautiful coastal Alabama and all there is to do in our neighborhood, going golfing might not come to mind.  In your mind’s eye, you may envision brightly colored parasails being towed behind ski boats or, perhaps the tall extended outriggers of a shrimp boat.  Maybe you think of the familiar blue and white striped umbrellas and beach chairs that decorate our beaches.  Or maybe you just smile at the thought of enjoying a local musician play on a restaurant deck while you slowly sip a perfectly prepared Bushwacker.  Whether golf comes to mind or not, it is certainly true that Gulf Shores and our surrounding communities are blessed with some of the best golf courses anywhere.  If golfing is a sport you’re passionate about or something you’d just like to try while you’re on vacation, we want you to know where to go.  Here is a list of our five favorite golf courses in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan:

  • Craft Farms Golf Resort

Craft Farms Golf Resort is one of the top resorts in the country.  The Cotton Creek Course and The Cypress Bend Course were both designed by the legendary golfer Arnold Palmer.  With perfectly trimmed fairways and surrounding areas unmatched in beauty, these 18 hole courses are a must for any golfer, pro or otherwise.  You will enjoy beautifully furnished clubhouses and be assisted by a knowledgeable and professional staff.  These courses are both challenging and entertaining.   Craft Farms Golf Resort is located at 3840 Cotton Creek Circle in Gulf Shores.  Check out their website for tee times and fees.  Make it a point to go by and visit Craft Farms while you’re in our area.  You never know, Arnold Palmer may have just designed the perfect course for You!

  • Kiva Dunes Resort and Golf

The Golf Course at Kiva Dunes has just over 7,100 yards of play area and is one of the top courses in Alabama.  Located just off Fort Morgan Road at 815 Plantation Road, Kiva Dunes is a completely public course.  In April 2018, it was ranked the top public course in Alabama by Golf Advisor.  Reviewers complimented the course as well as the staff.  Because of its unique location, literally between The Gulf of Mexico and Mobile Bay, the winds change frequently.  The course, itself, changes with the winds and each golfing experience at Kiva will be a unique one. For tee times and fees, visit Kiva Dunes online.

  • Peninsula Golf and Racquet Club 

Also located just off Fort Morgan Road, Peninsula Golf and Racquet Club is another of our local favorites.  Peninsula offers three separate 9 hole courses:  Lakes, Cypress and Marsh and we encourage you to play all three.  Combine two of the three to make an 18-hole round.  Each provides a distinctly different challenge and reward.  Finding this type of variety in one resort location is not always easy.  Make sure to visit the Peninsula Golf and Racquet Club website  to learn about tee times and fees.  Don’t forget to put Peninsula on your list of courses to check out while you’re staying with Sunset Properties.

  • One Club Golf

For one of the most distinctive golfing experiences around, try One Club Golf.  Along with traditional golfing outings, One Club Golf offers golfing after dark.  This fun and unique way to enjoy the sport is sure to please anyone.  With Sunset Golf, Glow Golf and Golf Happy Hour, we are sure everyone in your family will have a blast.  Conveniently located at 4000 Gulf Shores Parkway in Gulf Shores, One Club Golf is located only a short distance from most any beach home in our inventory.

  • Gulf Shores Golf Club 

Located in the heart of Gulf Shores at 520 Clubhouse Drive, Gulf Shores Golf Club is a semi-private club.  Guests are welcome to play this top-rated Alabama golf course, along with members.   This beautifully kept 18-hole course is home to several local non-golfing residents.  Raccoons, squirrels and alligators can sometimes be found on or near the course.  The course has some challenging holes, as well.  Trees and ponds make navigating this local favorite fun and exciting. While you’re here, be sure to visit the Pro Shop and clubhouse.  Gulf Shores Golf Club, built in the 1960s, is an icon in our area and we know you will want to visit it while you’re in our neighborhood.  Be sure to check out their website to make your reservation while you’re in town!

As a bonus to this blog, we don’t want to miss an opportunity to highlight our favorite place to practice.   The City of Orange Beach has opened Orange Beach Golf Center located at 4700 Easy Street in Orange Beach.  Easy Street is just off Canal Road near The Wharf in Orange Beach.  The Orange Beach Golf Center features 9-hole course with a lighted driving range, practice putting/chipping greens, practice sand bunker, and a Pro Shop.  This golf venue is so lovely and well-kept.  We encourage island guests to visit The Orange Beach Golf Center for a relaxing afternoon of golf.

We know many of you come to visit our beaches and stay with us at Sunset Properties and golf isn’t even in your plans.  You may not have even known about all the great ways to enjoy the sport in our coastal towns.  We encourage you to venture out and try something new.  You and your family may just fall in love with golfing here with us in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan.  If you’re already an avid golfer, and you knew about all our great courses, we encourage you to give Sunset Properties a try!  Our vacation homes range from one bedroom condos to multi-bedroom luxury beach homes.  We have homes that welcome small dogs and homes with private pools, and pretty much anything in between.  Just as we are sure you will find your best golf experience here in our area, we are equally sure you will find your perfect Sunset Properties vacation home.

www.sunsetproperties.com

251.543.1370

Top 10 Ways to Destress in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan for Labor Day Weekend 2019

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With Labor Day 2019 right around the corner, we know you’re probably trying to squeeze in one last summer beach vacation getaway.  At Sunset Properties, we are ready for your arrival.  Not only are we looking forward to you coming to visit us along the Alabama Gulf Coast, we have ten great ideas how to spend your Labor Day 2019 stress-free and without laboring at all!

  1. Relax under a beach umbrella and read a book

How does stretching out one last time this summer on a beach chair, book in hand, as you relax to the unmatched sounds of the waves of The Gulf of Mexico sound?  To us it sounds pretty good!  Be sure to pack your sunscreen.  We know it’s late in the season, but you can still catch a pretty bad burn if you’re not careful.  So pack your favorite novel, your cozy towel, and come on down to Gulf Shores, stay in Dunes 401, located in the Fort Morgan community, and you beach relaxation moment is only a few steps away!  

  • Watch the sun rise and set from your own beach home balcony

Maybe you’re an early riser.  Why not enjoy a hot cup of coffee as you watch the sun come up over The Gulf from your own private balcony in Indies 603?  Maybe you’d rather sleep in.  We get it.  After all, you’re on vacation.  Well, be sure to watch one of the last summer day’s sunsets with an amazing view of Perdido Pass and Alabama Point from Caribe C Penthouse 14.  With a view unlike any other on the island, this penthouse with its exquisite decor is perfectly placed for amazing views any time of day.

  • Stroll the boardwalks at Wade Ward Nature Park

The boardwalks at Wade Ward Park, located over an amazing wetland area in the heart of Gulf Shores, provide a place for a relaxing stroll.  You’ll be able to become a part of your surroundings while walking safely above any wildlife that could seem threatening.  This city park is located only about five minutes from your vacation home Lighthouse 607.  So getting here won’t create any stress, either.

  • Watch the tide ebb and flow under the Gulf State Park Pier

The Gulf State Park Pier has almost a half mile of railing and the view underneath changes almost minute-by-minute.  We’ve heard about people who have glass aquariums or fish bowls in their offices for stress relief.  We suggest taking a walk out on our pier to enjoy an unmatched view of the best natural open aquarium anywhere:  The Gulf of Mexico.  You’re almost guaranteed to see schools of fish swimming in the waves no matter what time you go visit the pier.  For extra entertainment, make it a night trip.  The waves lapping against the pier make a sound that is soothing to not only your ears, but also to your mind, body and soul.   Couple that with the feel of the night air along the Alabama Gulf Coast, and we believe you’ll forget all about labor of any sort.

  • Watch the boats travel through Perdido Pass

Just steps from Caribe C Penthouse 14, is Perdido Pass.  This is one of our favorite fishing spots.  But if fishing seems too much like work to you, just find a bench and watch the boats go in and out from our back bays.  We’ve also seen sea turtles swim by and you may even catch a glimpse of a manatee or two.   This is definitely a relaxing way to spend a few lazy hours while you’re in Orange Beach.

  • Watch the sunset over Mobile Bay

From your deck at Navy Cove 2113, you’ll have a spectacular view of the sunset over Mobile Bay.  Why not fix yourself a cold beverage and just sit back on your private deck and watch the summer sun’s rays fade away into the bay.  As the summer draws to an end, the sun’s rays seem to soften and stretch across the bay in a way you can only see this time of year.  Make plans to stay in one evening and see for yourself.

  • Watch the dolphins play at Orange Beach Waterfront Park

Have you ever been to Orange Beach Waterfront Park?  This is a great place for a family picnic and to spend an afternoon enjoying the outdoors. You can also walk out on the pier and you might be able to see dolphins playing just off shore in Wolf Bay. With clean public restrooms and a large kids area, this family friendly local park is a great place to relax and unwind.  There is no charge to use the park and everyone is welcome.

  • Kick back and float in your beach home’s pool

We cannot forget about this special way to relax and recharge.  All of our condominium beach homes have pools on site.  Many of our beach houses have pools available in their communities and a couple of our homes have private pools attached to them.  Check out Dream, Kiva and Sip N Sea to see what a luxury beach home with a private pool looks like.  Talk about a great way to spend a few hours before you have to return to work.  Bring your float and kick back and let the gentle rolling waters of your nearest pool wash away your stress.

  • Walk your fur baby at Unleashed Dog Park in Orange Beach

We know walking your fur baby at home is relaxing.  Why not bring your furry kiddo to the beach with you and walk him or her at Orange Beach’s own doggie park:  UnleashedSunset Properties has several homes that allow small dogs with some restrictions, so bringing your four legged friend on your weekend vacation can be stress-free, too!

10.    Shell hunt on Fort Morgan Beach

For some of the best treasures the Gulf can provide, we suggest walking Fort Morgan Beach.  Because the waves of the Mobile Bay are softer and gentler than those the Gulf produces, we often find larger shells and sand dollars on Fort Morgan Beach.  Remember, any artifacts you may uncover belong to the Fort and cannot be removed, but shells, sand dollars and the like are yours to take home.  These make wonderful natural souvenirs and will help you remember your trip for many years to come.

We at Sunset Properties, know your last beach weekend this summer is important to you.  We want you to have a relaxing 2019 Labor Day Weekend.  We are proud to offer clean, fully stocked beach homes to fit any need and are ready to make your reservation with you.

If you need us during your stay, we have two office locations on the island to serve you.  You can also reach us by phone, text and email.  It is our goal to make your Labor Day getaway, just like any other vacation with Sunset Properties, as stress-free and pleasant as possible.  We are looking forward to hearing from you!

www.sunsetpropertie.com

251.543.1310

5 Places to Take a Break on Your Way to the Beach in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach or Fort Morgan

You’re all packed and headed to south Alabama to visit your favorite beach home on the Alabama Gulf Coast.  You know you have a five hour trip ahead of you and your kiddos will get restless in the car.  How many times have you heard “are we there yet?”  What if you plan a stop on the way?  Why not take a few minutes to let everyone out of the car, stretch your legs, get some food and take a break from the trip?  Here are five places we suggest stopping for a break on your way to you Sunset Properties beach home:

  1.  Buc-ees

Have you ever been to a Buc-ee’s before?  Chances are, if you’ve visited Texas, you have.  However, there is only one Buc-ee’s in Alabama.  Conveniently located just off Interstate 10 on the Beach Express near Loxley, Alabama, is the only Buc-ee’s in our great state.  Located some 460 miles from the next nearest Buc-ee’s this store, this is one place you won’t want to miss.  The first thing you’ll notice is the large number of gas pumps.  The second will probably be the prices.  Buc-ee’s is very competitive with gas prices, and chances are, you’ll find gas a few cents a gallon cheaper here than anywhere nearby.  But don’t just stop for gas.  Go inside.  With clean restrooms, a friendly staff and great food, Buc-ee’s is surely a place worth stopping by.  They offer food and beverage choices from made-to-order hot food, to a super coffee bar, to an Icee selections second-to-none. Buc-ee’s has something for everyone.  Try the brisket sandwiches!  This little taste of Texas right here in Alabama is something no beef lover should miss.  But more than food, Buc-ee’s is a great retail shop, too.  If you forgot your swimsuit, Buc-ee’s has you covered!  Need camping gear or a great cooler?  Check out their selection of outdoor supplies.  How about a gift for your friend back home?  They have that, too.  And does your little traveler need a new toy?  Buc-ee’s has a great selection of souvenir toys and gifts.  So, if “are we there yet?”  needs a “yes” answer, stop in at Buc-ee’s and be amazed by this new retail venue.  Once you get back in your car, you’re less than an hour away from your beach home.

  •  Burris Farm Market

Have you heard about Burris Farm Market’s milkshakes and cobblers?  Located on Alabama Highway 59 (Gulf Shores Parkway) in the heart of Loxley, Burris Farm Market has been a staple for fresh fruits, veggies and plants for years.  But you can’t stop in at Burris’s without having some hot peach cobbler or a made-to-order strawberry milkshake.  Fruits and vegetables sold here are mostly locally grown and are always fresh.  Your Sunset Properties beach home has a fully stocked kitchen, so why not stop at Burris Farm Market and get some fresh veggies to pair with local Alabama Seafood?  While your kiddos are enjoying their milkshake break, you can take some time to stretch your legs and peruse their extensive fresh selection.  After a milkshake and shopping break, you only have about forty-five minutes left on your trip to your beach home.  This little last part of the trip should be a bit easier with smiling kiddos in tow.

  •  Groovy Goat

We know OWA is probably on your short list of things to do while you’re in our area.  But why not stop by the Groovy Goat at OWA on your way to your Sunset Properties  beach home and take a break from the road?  The Groovy Goat has a full menu and lots of beverage choices.  This unique restaurant also has 40 arcade games to keep the kiddos occupied while you rest yourself.  Located at 106A S. OWA Boulevard in Foley, taking a break here will allow everyone to just chill out for a few minutes.  The kids will love their first glimpse of OWA and you will be able to catch your second wind before you finish the drive to your beach home.  The Groovy Goat is about ten minutes from Gulf Shores.  You’re almost to your vacation home so stay a few minutes at The Groovy Goat and just unwind for a bit.

  •  Pirate’s Cove

Hey Matey!  Have you thought about stopping at a beach front venue and having one of the best cheeseburgers anywhere on your way to your beach home?  If that sounds tempting, travel about fifteen or twenty minutes from Foley on county road 95 in Josephine (near Elberta), to Pirate’s Cove Marina and Restaurant.  When you arrive, you’ll probably sit outside overlooking the water.  Directly across the bay, is Orange Beach.  Many locals travel to Pirate’s Cove by boat.  Their fabulous cheeseburgers and Bushwackers are local faves.  Taking a break from the trip at Pirate’s Cove will give the kiddos a first glimpse at the sand and water they’ve been talking about all the way down.  It’ll give the adults time to breathe in the fresh air that you’ve been longing for ever since your made your vacation reservations.  Don’t forget to get yourself a Pirate’s Cove can hugger.  After all, you’re on vacation already.  Why not make your first souvenir be a cool one?!  When you guys leave Pirate’s Cove, you’re about thirty minutes from Gulf Shores and Orange Beach.

  •  Tanger Outlets

How about a little retail therapy to break up the monotony of the road?  In addition to being one of the best retail shopping centers on the Alabama Gulf Coast, Tanger Outlets in Foley is a great place to stop, stretch your legs, find clean restrooms and get something to eat.   With more than 70 stores, everyone is sure to find something at Tanger Outlets.  Stop in for a great pizza at Bella’s Pizza or have some mouth watering sushi at Rock N Roll Sushi.  Walk around the property and explore stores like Kate Spade New York, Nike Factory Store and St. Nick’s Knife Factory.  You’ll also find a Ralph Lauren Factory Store, a Yankee Candle Outlet and Kay Jewelers Outlet, and many more stores.  For a complete list of stores in our Tanger Outlets click here.  After you’ve taken a little break at Tanger Outlets and you’re ready to finish your trip to your beach home, you can ride easy.  You only have about fifteen minutes and you’ll be in Gulf Shores.

We, at Sunset Properties, are looking forward to your arrival.  We know that last hour or so of a trip to your vacation can be a bit trying.  Everyone’s tired of spending time in the car and everyone is in need of a short break from the road.  We hope you will try some or all of these uniquely local spots either on your way to your beach, while you’re staying with us, or on your way out.  Enjoy your summer and thank you for vacationing with Sunset Properties!  

And if you happen to be in the market to purchase your very own beach home, please email John at info@sunsetproperties .  He’ll be happy to show you around!

www.sunsetproperties.com

251.543.1370


The Best Places to Picnic in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan

So you want to spend a day out in about enjoying the natural scenery in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan.  We, at Sunset Properties, know your indoor accommodations are important, but now you’re ready to just get outdoors.  You’ve got your comfy walking shoes on, applied some insect repellent and sunscreen and you’re looking for ideas.  Here are six easy-to-access places that you should drive to, then get out of your car and enjoy a little of our island paradise on foot.  Take your family and a picnic basket filled with fresh local Alabama Seafood and make memories you’ll cherish for a lifetime.

  • Wade Ward Nature Park

Located just off the sidewalk along Highway 59 in Gulf Shores near Scoop’s Ice Cream, Wade Ward Nature Park is one of our favorite places to explore.  With free public parking nearby on East 1st Street, accessibility for the whole family is easy.  You’ll enter the park area as you cross a wooden boardwalk bridge and under a pavilion.  The walkway is an elevated boardwalk that sits above the wetlands below.  It’s an easy walk and you’re almost guaranteed to have great views of alligators, heron, and other coastal wildlife.  In the marshes, you’ll find an array of plant life indigenous to this type of ecosystem.  Bring along your camera!  Wade Ward Nature Park is part of our Alabama Coastal  Birding Trail.  Migrating birds are often spotted here.  Your whole family will enjoy this outing where you’re sure to see plants and animals unlike any in your own front yard north of our beautiful Alabama Gulf Coast.

  • Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail

Established in 2003, Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail is actually seven trails in one.  It is made up of over 15 miles of trail paths and passes through six distinctly different ecosystems in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and around Gulf State Park.  A fun trail destination is Boulder Park.  You will find giant boulders perfect for kids to climb.  It is located  next to the Pavilion and Butterfly Garden; about 1½ miles from the Catman Road trailhead on Highway 161.  Rock climbing venues along our Alabama Gulf Coast are uncommon, but this one’s sure to please.  For a complete map of all the trails to explore along the Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail follow this MAP link.  In the meantime, don’t miss an opportunity to bring your kids to Boulder Park for some memorable outdoor fun!

  • Orange Beach Waterfront Park

Located on Canal Road to the east of Doc’s Seafood, Orange Beach Waterfront Park is a great place for a family outing.  With pavilions and restrooms and an unmatched view of Wolf Bay, your whole family will enjoy an afternoon here.  Be sure to walk out on the 400-foot-long fishing pier to get the absolute best view possible!  While alcohol is not allowed in Orange Beach Waterfront Park, pets are!  Remember to visit this family-friendly, exceptionally clean outdoor park when you’re planning to get your whole family out for an afternoon of sightseeing and picnicking opportunities.

  • Fort Morgan Beaches

What blog about natural walking trails and outdoor family venues would be complete without mentioning the serene beaches of Fort Morgan?  Most island guests are accustomed to seeing the clean, swept, sandy white beaches in front of condos and places like The Hangout in Gulf Shores.  While those beaches are always nice and welcoming, the undeveloped beaches of Fort Morgan are some of our favorites.  The dunes are a little more covered with sea oats and the island wildlife is often more visible.  To get here, travel all the way to the end of Fort Morgan Road and enter the fort.  Park near the restrooms and walk out the brick walkway to the beaches.  At the end of the walkway, go left and head towards the Gulf of Mexico at Mobile Point or choose to walk to the right and explore The Mobile Bay side of this beach.  If you need more reasons to visit Fort Morgan this summer, check out our blog about the Fort.  And if you happen to look out across the water and see Dauphin Island bridge and wonder what’s over there, we’ll tell you:  The Dauphin Island Sea Lab.  Catch the Mobile Bay Ferry, which leaves from the entrance gates at Fort Morgan,  to cross Mobile Bay and extend your nature outing around this area by including a trip to the The Estuarium.  You’ll be glad you did!

  • Romar Beach

Romar Beach, located nearly 7 miles from Highway 59 on Perdido Beach Boulevard, has been a local’s favorite Gulf access point for years.  There is only a limited amount of free parking around this Alabama State Park beach access, but if you’re just looking to run out across the sand and put your toes in the water, you have to stop here at Romar Beach. Don’t forget to bring a picnic basket.  This little stretch of public access is a great place to spread a blanket and have a snack.  Many people have asked us about the name “Romar”.  Romar is a combination of two last names:  Roche and Martin.  These two gentlemen were the first to build homes in this area of our island around 1924.  Stop by and see for yourself what attracted them all those years ago!  The years have changed, but the beauty of Romar Beach remains.

  • Lake Shelby

Lake Shelby is located inside Gulf State Park just off Perdido Beach Boulevard on Highway 135.  This well-kept outdoor venue welcomes pets and people, alike.  Pets, however, must be leashed.  Lake Shelby is known for its wild alligator population and they are protected, so be aware if you choose to bring your fur babies. Leashing them is an absolute must and any type of feeding or molesting the gators is a crime.  Fishing is also allowed in Lake Shelby.  There are picnic areas, designated swimming areas and restrooms available, as well.  Lake Shelby is a unique body of water in our area.  It is considered a freshwater lake, even though it is so close to the Gulf.  You’ll notice the color of the water is not like most other lakes you’ve seen, too.  But it is safe for swimming and fishing.  Freshwater bass, bream and crappie all live in Lake Shelby, along with trout and mullet.  Be sure to visit this unique lake and adjoining park. 

We’re glad you’re choosing to spend part of your summer with us in our island paradise.  At Sunset Properties, we have several beautifully decorated and fully stocked beach homes around the island available for your family’s use.Imagine, Dunes 206 and Navy Cove 2113 are located just minutes from Fort Morgan.  Lighthouse 607 is not too far from Lake Shelby.  If you’re looking for a penthouse, check out Caribe C Penthouse 14.  If none of these fit your vacation stay needs, email us atinfo@sunsetproperties.com or just give us a call 251.543.1370 .  We will be happy to help you find the perfect beach home to make the indoor part of your beach vacation unforgettable!

www.sunsetproperties.com

251.543.1370

10 Reasons Why You Should #BOOKDIRECT with SUNSET PROPERTIES in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan

10 Reasons Why You Should #BOOKDIRECT with SUNSET PROPERTIES in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan

There are so many ways to book your vacation reservations nowadays, it’s hard to decide which way to go.  You can use a rental management company, use a VRBO or 3rd party site, or just book with an individual you find on Facebook.  All have their advantages but there are a few reasons going with a rental management company like Sunset Properties can be your best option.  Here are 10 reasons why you should consider Booking Direct with Sunset Properties when you plan your next vacation to Gulf Shores, Orange Beach or Fort Morgan.

  1.  Extensive choices of homes

When you choose to book direct with a vacation rental management company, you have a large inventory of homes to choose from.  If you have a specific number of bedrooms needed, prefer a specific location or need special accommodations like elevators or boat ramps, all you have to do is search in one online location to find it all.  Sunset Properties offers exceptionally decorated homes with all of these amenities available and all you have to do is look at one website – ours!  Tired of hunting around the web to find your perfect vacation home in your price range?  Look no further than www.sunsetproperties.com because we know we have the perfect place for you.

  •  Availability of staff

Booking with VRBO or with an individual may seem great at first.  You send an email, negotiate a price, and submit your payment via the web.  Easy.  Peasy.  Done.  But what about service after the sale?  What happens if you get to your vacation home and you need a real live breathing person to help you?  Like right then?  What happens if you get to your vacation home and find out the person you booked with and paid via PayPal is not even affiliated with the property?  What if you trustingly get scammed?   Then what?  When you book direct with Sunset Properties, the internet is just your first connection with us.  If you arrive at one of our amazing beach homes and you need something right away and need a local person to help, you’re in luck!  We have two offices in Gulf Shores.  One is located at The Dunes near Fort Morgan and the other is across from The Track at 3145 Gulf Shores Parkway (Alabama Highway 59).  We have office hours most days and an on-call service for the things that pop up when our office is closed.  If you need a human to help you, one will be available.  We’re just a phone call away.  No emailing required.

  •  Cleanliness of homes and properties

When you book with a rental management company, you know you are getting the cleanest possible condo or home, right?  You really cannot be sure if you book from an individual.  When you book with Sunset Properties, you can rest assured you will check-in to a superbly clean home.  Just because you’re coming to the beautiful Alabama Gulf Coast, where we know you love our sugary white sandy beaches, doesn’t mean you want to spend the night with sand on your floors.  Not only will you check-in to a home cleaner than you might expect, you will also find brooms and mops in your condo or home in case you want to tidy up while you’re there.  

  •  Options to change your mind

What happens if you book your vacation and something comes up?  Can you change your mind?  Can you change your home choice?  Can you change your dates?  We know that most folks plan their vacation times months in advance, but without regard to that, sometimes work can get in the way of the best made plans.  Sometimes, our bosses require that we present an unanticipated report right in the middle of our vacation week.  Sometimes we get sick or have accidents that prevent us from being able to go on our much-needed getaways.  Then what?  Maybe you’ll be able to reschedule with an online service or individual or maybe not.  At Sunset Properties, we understand things happen.  Depending on your circumstances, we will make every effort to help you reschedule your stay to a time that will work for you with minimal or no financial penalty.  It’s what we do.  It’s who we are.  We are a family-owned, family-run company.  We love to go on vacations with our families, too.  And we know that for most folks a vacation week is a much- anticipated luxury family time and to lose that opportunity all together makes no one happy.  Why risk losing your pre-paid vacation money with a strictly online service or private individual when you can book direct with confidence with Sunset Properties?

  •  Travel insurance guarantee

We encourage all vacation renters to purchase travel insurance.  For a minimum investment on top of your rental cost, travel insurance covers all kinds of unexpected things that can, without proper planning, ruin a great vacation experience.  We are proud to offer travel insurance.  Depending on which level of coverage you choose, it will assist financially with all kinds of life’s little mishaps that may occur.  Lose your luggage?  It can help buy you clothes.  Miss your flight?  It can help with that.  Did someone get sick while you’re traveling?  Travel insurance can even help with medical costs.  Can you get travel insurance from an individual?  Maybe or maybe not.  But you definitely have that option with Sunset Properties.  For an in depth guide to what travel insurance covers, check out our blog about it!

  •  WYSIWYG

What you see is what you get.  Most of us believe that what is represented online is a true and accurate description showing recent pictures of vacation destination homes or anything else we purchase online.  At Sunset Properties, we pride ourselves on keeping our website updated to provide the most accurate information about and pictures of our beach homes.  We don’t like going on our vacations and finding out what we booked isn’t what we get when we arrive and we never want our guests to be disappointed, either.  

  •  No scams or spams

How many crazy texts and spam emails do you get daily?  We get our fair share!  We don’t like them, and you probably don’t either.  We won’t share your personal information with random vendors.  We won’t send you unnecessary texts.  We won’t spam you and we won’t scam you.  While some individuals may not actually be who they say they are, Sunset Properties is a reputable company, both in our local area and nationally.  We are proud to be a member of the Coastal Alabama Business Chamber and a partner with the Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau.  Additionally, we have partnerships with Xplorie, and Red Sky.  We are the real deal and we have over thirty-five years of experience in the real estate and hospitality industry and we are here to stay.  You can rest assured you’re booking with a great company and rest well when you arrive and stay with us.

  •  Future bookings are easy

Once you become part of our guest family, your future bookings will be super easy.  We actually form relationships with most of our guests.  But even if we don’t get to know you in person, you will have an opportunity to go ahead and book your next stay with us while you’re here.  We love to get folks set up ahead of time for their next trip to our Island Paradise.  We believe you will fall in love with your vacation home (most of our guests do!) and want to go ahead and make sure it’s available for your next visit to Gulf Shores, Orange Beach or Fort Morgan.  Just give our office a call, and we’ll get you all set up.

  •  Pets are welcome

Do you travel with your fur baby?  We do.  Our four-legged kids are just that:  our kids, too.  So, we truly understand the need to bring your whole family along when you come to the beach.  Many of our vacation homes are dog friendly.  With some restrictions, you are welcome to bring your fur baby with you.  We are also happy to recommend doggie spas, doggie daycares and places to take your dog for a family outing.  We also know which beaches are dog friendly and where the best dog parks are.  We can recommend these vendors and venues with confidence, because we go there with our fur babies, ourselves.  We live and work here.  We are not just some internet site or faceless email you correspond with.  Can your VRBO site or private individuals do that?

   10.  Special services are offered

Is there something special you want when you arrive to your vacation home?  Maybe you want a special meal delivered.  Maybe you want a Christmas tree when you arrive.  Maybe you just want someone to accept flowers for you, so your arrival is one to remember.  We will make every effort to accommodate special guest requests like these.  Just call our office at 251.543.1370 and tell us what you need and let us see if we can make it happen for you.  We may even know the perfect person for you to call to arrange your special something.  

These are just a few of the reasons booking direct with Sunset Properties is a great choice.  We didn’t even mention the add-on fees VRBO charges owners that you, the guest, will ultimately incur.  We hope you choose to book with us.  We are ready to help you get your next vacation planned in one of our amazing beach homes that sleep from 2-20 people and pets.  We have homes with elevators, stairs, private pools and gyms on site.  We have condos and story-book beautiful Gulf front houses.  We have homes in golf course subdivisions and homes with boat slips.  We even have a couple of penthouses that are just waiting for your arrival.  

Go ahead.  Give us a call.  Book direct with Sunset Properties and you’ll be on your way to an amazing vacation experience on the Alabama Gulf Coast.

www.sunsetproperties.com

251.543.1370

5 Best Places to Back-To-School Shop in Gulf Shores

We know you’re on the last few weeks of summer vacation and school starting back is already on your mind.  After all, it’s literally just a calendar page turn away.  While you’re visiting our beautiful beaches and great summer destination venues here on the Alabama Gulf Coast, why not take advantage of our Alabama state back-to-school sales tax holiday weekend and save on your back-to-school purchases?  Enjoy a state tax free shopping experience for most of your back-to-school items from Friday, July 19 through Sunday, July 21, 2019.  Here are some of our favorite places to do back-to-school shopping here in beautiful Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Foley.

  • SanRoc Cay Marina

Have you been to SanRoc Cay?  This uniquely upscale outdoor mall is a great place to begin your back-to-school apparel shopping.  Located in Orange Beach on Perdido Beach Boulevard, SanRoc Cay not only offers great boutique shopping, but also great places to take a snack or beverage break.  School clothes and shoes are on the list of approved items eligible for the sales tax  holidaySanRoc Cay has some lovely boutiques and we encourage you to visit them.  Jane Loves Shoes (JLS) at SanRoc Cay offers a variety of beautiful trendy footwear.  Along with the great shoes they stock, be sure to check out their clothing.  You won’t be disappointed. Jane Loves Shoes and we think you’ll love JLS! Another place that always makes us smile is Too Hot Mommas.  With a classy and fun-to-wear selection of both clothing and accessories, Too Hot Mommas should also be on your shopping list.  Remember many accessories do not qualify for the sales tax holiday, but you’ll probably want to splurge and get jewelry and a handbag to match your new school outfit.  After all, the best way to go back to school in your hometown is wearing some of the trendiest coastal fashions available today.

  • The Wharf at Orange Beach

You were planning to visit The Wharf in Orange Beach anyway to ride the Ferris Wheel and go to the Luke Bryan Concert at the Amphitheatre.  Why not do some school shopping while you’re there? With a host of great shops like Khloe and Kate Children’s Designer Boutique, Sand Dollar Lifestyles, and Ocean Eddie’s , we know your whole family will find some terrific clothes to wear when you welcome back the fall.  While you’re at The Wharf, be sure to play a round of mini-golf and visit Villagio Grille.  You’re going to need a break from all this shopping and the good folks at Villagio Grille serve everything from pizza to steaks to seafood.  When you’re making your list of special spots to shop for those necessities to make the school year start off exceptionally well, be sure to have The Wharf in Orange Beach at the top!

  • Tanger Outlets in Foley

When you’ve done all the shopping you can do at The Wharf, head north on the Foley Beach Express to Tanger Outlets in Foley.  We can’t say enough good things about Tanger Outlets.  The stores are stocked with the most highly sought-after fashions, the sales folks are extremely helpful, parking is easy and the conveniently located restrooms are clean.  With over 50 trendy clothing stores to shop, shoes in over 20 stores and plenty of places to eat when you’re all shopped out, Tanger Outlets really should be on your back-to-school list.  If you need one more reason to shop Tanger Outlets during our sales tax holiday, how about planning to attend their back-to-school shopping block party?  On Saturday, July 20, Tanger Outlets in Foley will be hosting a block party. There will be lawn games, balloon animals and a DJ.  There are also extra deals to be had, including saving an additional 25% off on some items.  Contact the mall office for details.

  • Downtown OWA

Did you know OWA has a shopping district?  That’s right!  Downtown OWA is home to Alvin’s Island and Parker & Co.  Everyone knows Alvin’s Island is chock full of trendy coastal tees, shorts, shoes and other fun apparel items our families love to wear at the beach.  We say you should wear them in the fall, too. After all, isn’t the beach your happy place?  Why not take a little of our local happiness home with you?  Parker & Co. is an affiliate of Utopia which is a hip little boutique in Orange BeachParker & Co. offers fashion-forward boutique clothing at affordable prices.  While you’re at OWA, be sure to check out the beautiful fountain show choreographed to music.  The fountain’s water dances each night at 6:30, 7:30 and 8:30.  Bring your camera along on this shopping adventure.  We’re sure you’re going to want to capture some great pics of the kids in front of the fountain.  We cannot leave out the Park at OWA with so many thrilling rides.  We know this blog is about shopping for school items, but, hey, if you can squeeze in a roller coaster ride while you’re at OWA, we say go for it!

  • Pelican Place at Craft Farms

If Target is on your list of places to shop for school supplies, then you’re in luck!  Pelican Place at Craft Farms in Gulf Shores should be your next stop.  Target is a unique place to find not only clothing and shoes, but also all the paper, pencils and laptops you might need.  All these items are listed on the tax-exempt list and Target is your one-stop-store for these commonly needed items.  Pelican Place is also home to Books-A-Million.  Many of us have AP reading assignments and BAM is a great place to pick up those popular American novels.  Finally, don’t forget about the clothing boutiques at Pelican Place.  Visit The Beach House Boutique where you’ll find a diverse selection of upscale beach outerwear and footwear for the ladies in your family.  We know your time in our little island paradise is limited, but your wardrobe doesn’t have to be.  And what better time to shop than when you’re avoiding taxes?

  • Shops at Original Oyster House Boardwalk

Last on our list, but not least is the Boardwalk at the Original Oyster House in Gulf Shores.  This has been one of our life-long favorite places to get our retail therapy.  To say this is a local’s favorite is an understatement.  Perhaps it was the consistently well-prepared food served in the Original Oyster House that first drew us to this unique shopping venue.  Maybe it was the cool view of the alligators swimming below.  We really cannot remember what first caught our attention here, but we are sure we love to shop the Boardwalk Shops and eat at the Original Oyster HouseGeez Louise Boutique is definitely one of our faves!  And we’re pretty sure you’ll love this store, too!  They have everything from great tees, to cute dresses, to flip flops, and even fun souvenirs you won’t find anywhere else along the Alabama Gulf Coast.  

We hope you enjoy our school sales tax holiday weekend while you’re staying with us at Sunset Properties.  At Sunset Properties, we manage wonderfully decorated and fully stocked beach homes in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan.  We offer condos like Lighthouse 607, single family homes like 4 Shore and penthouse condo homes like Caribe C Penthouse 14.  We manage several homes that allow small dogs and homes that will sleep from 2-20 people.  So, if you’re planning your back-to-school shopping adventure, why not skip ahead to Spring Break 2020.  That’s the next time you’ll be visiting our area, right?  Go ahead and call us today to make your reservation early.  Or better yet, stop by our office on Gulf Shores Parkway across from The Track and visit with us!  If you’re not already a part of our guest family, we’d love to add you!

Happy shopping and we are looking forward to meeting you!

www.sunsetproperties.com

251.543.1370

Things to do On July 4th in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan

Things to do On July 4th in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan

Here on the Alabama Gulf Coast, we love celebrating birthdays and our nation’s birthday is no exception!  Welcome to our Island Paradise.  We are so excited you’ve chosen to spend this Independence Day 2019 with us!  We know you’re looking forward to the awesome fireworks display sponsored by The City of Gulf Shores on July 4, 2019 at 9PM, but what will you do until the fireworks start?  Here are some suggestions on how to spend your Independence Day with your family:

  • Breakfast with Pirates and Princesses

This is a great way to start off any vacation day.  Dress the kiddos (and Mom and Dad) in their best pirate or princess costume and stop by The Hangout located at Gulf Place in Gulf Shores for a great breakfast buffet with Pirates and Princesses.  Costumes are not required, but are always fun!  Breakfast is served from 8AM until 11AM.  While you’re at The Hangout, you’ll most likely meet some of our local maidens and scallywags.  Be sure to ask one of them to help you search for buried treasure on a guided treasure hunt.  And bring your camera along, too.  The photographs you’ll catch are sure the be the most valuable treasures of the day!

  • Midmorning Mini Golf and Ice Cream -Crustacean Style

After breakfast, be sure to head over to Shrimpy’s Mini Golf & Ice Cream located only a couple of blocks from The Hangout at 204 East 2nd Avenue.  This super cute fishing village themed 18 hole mini golf course will be a bit of challenging fun for your whole family.  We know its hot to play outside on the 4th of July, so that’s why we suggest mini golfing at Shrimpy’s in the morning.  As soon as you’ve mastered all 18 holes, you can go inside to cool off with something delightfully frozen.  Shrimpy’s is home to more than 20 flavors of ice cream.  And the good folks at Shrimpy’s make a delicious Bananas Foster ice cream treat you’re sure to enjoy.

  • Lunch at Lulu’s

Lucy Buffett’s Lulu’s in Gulf Shores , located at 200 East 25th Avenue in Gulf Shores, is more than just a great dining experience.  It’s an entertainment experience, also.   We don’t have to tell you how great the food is at Lulu’s.  We know that by now, you’ve already heard.  But did you know Lulu’s offers menu items specifically for folks with seafood and other allergies?  Yep!  They do.  Just ask your server to tell you about it.  While you wait for your table, you and the kiddos will love the arcade.   If video games don’t appeal to you, load up on the sunscreen and head outside to the rope courses.  There is a course for the tiny tots and one for bigger kids.  Both are challenging and fun.  If waiting for a table today doesn’t appeal to you, you’re in luck!  Lulu’s has a “go online and get in line” option that will allow you to get your name on the waitlist from a “Beat the Wait link on the website.  So plan to have lunch at Lulu’s on the 4th of July and don’t forget to get one of their iconic t-shirts while you’re there.

  • Be Lazy and Cool All Afternoon

As the heat of the day takes over, all we want to do is be lazy.  Why not do it in the Crystal Waters River at Waterville USA?  This slow moving water ride will allow you to simply relax on your tube and float the ⅓ mile course around the park.  This is a great way to cool off from the mid-summer heat while still enjoying the outdoors of our island paradise.   While the kiddos enjoy the fast paced waterslides like the Screamin’ Demon and Rainbow Falls, the adults can just kick back and relax.  Don’t forget your sunscreen.  Maybe chilling in your own private cabana appeals to you.  Rent your own space at Cabana Cove inside the park.  Enjoy seating for up to eight people including two beach recliners.  You’ll have a server assigned to your cabana and your server will bring your food and drink orders right to you.  As a bonus, each cabana rental comes with two free beach towels that are yours to keep.  That’s a pretty cool souvenir to take home after a fun afternoon enjoying one of the oldest, and yet most modern,  theme parks in Gulf Shores. 

  • Dine at Doc’s

After a long day that included everything from pirates to screamin’ demons, you’re gonna need a comfortable, casual place to have dinner.  Give Doc’s Seafood Shack located on Canal Road in Orange Beach a try.  For some of the best local seafood, the nicest servers and one of the most laid back atmospheres around, Doc’s is sure to please.  If you like raw half-shell oysters or fresh fried shrimp, you’ll love Doc’s.  Not a seafood lover?  That’s okay!  Doc’s serves fried chicken that’s so good, we’ve heard the Colonel is jealous.  If you’d like to peek at their menu before you go, follow this MENU link for a look.

  • Finally Fireworks

The City of Gulf Shores will once again this year host a fireworks show unlike any other around.  Beginning at 9PM, fireworks will be shot from the Gulf State Park Fishing and Education Pier.   Fireworks will be shot from the southernmost end of the 1500 foot long pier making viewing from most any point in Gulf Shores or Orange Beach pretty amazing.  For a great vantage point, find a spot on one of our State Park Beaches, or watch from your vacation home atBare Foot, Flip Flop or Ellie Fish II.   If you’d like to stay a little more out of the hustle and bustle of Gulf Shores and just come into town for the day or to see the fireworks, check outSpunky Sandpiper, Imagine, Pelicans Rest and Wits Inn.  All of these immaculate beach homes are fully stocked with linens and kitchen accessories, exceptionally clean, and ready for your arrival.  Sunset Properties rental management company manages a wide variety of beach homes around the island, ranging from condos to houses with sleeping arrangements for up to 20 people.  Many of our beach homes are dog friendly and we will be happy to recommend a great 4th of July outing for your fur baby, as well.  We want your whole family to enjoy America’s Birthday Celebration.

As you plan your 4th of July Independence Day Celebration in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach or Fort Morgan, we hope you’re planning to stay with us at Sunset Properties.

Happy Birthday, America!  God bless you!

www.sunsetproperties.com

251.543.1370

5 Fun Family Things to do in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan

5 Fun Family Things to do in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan

So you’re headed to Gulf Shores, Orange Beach or Fort Morgan for a week in June and you want to do some outside stuff with your honey and the kiddos.  You’ve already been to The Track and, even though you love Waterville USA, you want to do something just a little different.  Remember the old days when you went biking around the island with your parents?  Looking for some ideas similar to that?  Well, you’re in luck!  We, at Sunset Properties know and appreciate the importance of spending quality time with those you love because we are a family-owned, family oriented company.   Here are our suggestions for 5 Fun Family Things to do Together in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan while you’re vacationing in June.

  1.  Beach Volleyball

Ok, so you’re at the beach and the first thing you want to do is feel the sun on your shoulders and the sand between your toes, right?  Well, why not turn those wonderful feelings into a fun family game of beach volleyball?  There are a couple of nets around our island already set up and waiting for you to arrive.  Bring your own ball, plenty of sunscreen and some cool water and you’re all set.  For a list of suggested items to bring to the beach every day, check out blog about things to put in your beach bag.  Volleyball nets are located at The Public Beach in Gulf Shores and at Cotton Bayou, a part of Gulf State Park, in Orange Beach.  Gulf Shores is a great place to go watch the NCAA Beach Volleyball Championship games held in May and it is a great place for us to all be beach volleyball champions all summer long!

  •  Geocaching

Since 2000, the global hide-and-seek treasure hunt game of Geocaching has taken off.  More and more places to hunt for treasures are being added all the time.  Did you know you can search for treasures right here in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan?  The Coastal Alabama Cashers have hidden lots of treasure boxes or “caches” around our island and they are just waiting to be discovered.  Learn about our island and its ecosystem.  Discover lesser traveled places and find treasures!  What a great way to spend a summer day!  To join the Geocaching craze, visit www.geocaching.com and sign up.  It’s an easy-to-use fun free app.  Kids and adults alike enjoy this interactive game.  Your fist find is right off Fort Morgan Road!  Make memories unlike any others.  So set aside some time, open your app, load up the kiddos and head out for adventure.   Explore our area in this unique way…and to quote Dr. Seuss:  oh the places you’ll go!

  •  Escape Room

One of the newest attractions on our island are the Escape Rooms.  If working as a team to solve clues sounds like fun, you and your family will love the challenge of an Escape Room.  This activity is one that will take the whole family working together to complete.  There are several scenarios from which to choose. Some Escape Rooms allow younger children and some have age restrictions, so its best to use our links provided here to determine which family outing will work for yours.  You’ll need to make reservations and choose your game scenario, so start by checking out Gulf Coast Escape Room for all the details of their Escape Room experiences.  Another option is XIT Escape Room located at Pelican Place at Craft Farms. A third option is the Escape House located at Waterville USA.  Located on the site of the world famous waterpark in Gulf Shores, the Escape House is sure to thrill your whole family.  Make sure you add this fun family outing to your “to do” list this Summer 2019 while you’re vacationing along the Alabama Gulf Coast.  Your whole family will enjoy this unique experience and you’re sure to take home some memories like no others.

  •  Mini Golf

What is a trip to the beach without a game of mini-golf?  It is one of the most economical and entertaining ways to spend some time playing with your family.  There are several places to play mini-golf around our island.  Pirate’s Island Adventure Golf is a fun course that is built with a pirate ship theme.  Tiki’s Mini Golf and Bike Shack, located right next to the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo is also a favorite.   Once known as Zooland Mini Golf, this course is a timeless classic for any tourist or local alike.  A third option for mini golf is Adventure Island Mini Golf. Adventure Island is so easy to find.  Just drive East on Beach Boulevard, toward Florida, and look for the big bright volcano across the street from the Gulf in Orange Beach.  The kids will love the volcano and you will love the quality family time you all spend together.  Another option for mini golf is The Wharf Mini Golf.  Visiting The Wharf in Orange Beach is on most folk’s minds while at the beach, but did you know they have a mini-golf course?  That’s right!  So while you guys are shopping for the whole family, don’t forget to get in a round of family mini-golf!

  •  Biking

Bike riding is always a great way to get the whole family outside and doing something together. Remember how much fun you had as a kid exploring our island with your parents?  In the old days, we had to strap our bikes to the back of the station wagon and bring them down.  Traveling with our bikes has become a bit easier now, but if you don’t want to haul your bikes to the Alabama Gulf Coast, we know where you can rent some for your outing.  Visit Tiki’s Mini Golf and Bike Shack.  This fun little Gulf Shores business has plenty of bikes to choose from.  Another option for bike rentals is Beach Bike Rentals in Orange Beach.  Along with all the entertainment and safety equipment you’ll need, like helmets, bells and baskets, Beach Bike Rentals has a wide variety of bike options.  Look for choices like cruiser bikes, tandems, adult trikes, children’s bikes, pull behinds and other child carriers as listed on their website.  Their website also shows in detail several suggestions for outings.  Check out Beach Bike Rentals for help with planning your whole day touring our island with your family.

With so many things to do as a family along the Alabama Gulf Coast, you’re sure to find the perfect way to hang out with your peeps! And with so many great beach home rentals available from Sunset Properties, we know we can get you all set with your accommodations, as well.  If you have a small family, check out Dunes 705.  This adorable condo located near Fort Morgan sleeps up to six comfortably.  If your family is a little larger, give 4 Shore a look!  Located just off West Beach, this amazing home sleeps up to eleven folks!  Sunset Properties is happy you’re coming to visit us and we cannot wait to meet your whole family!

www.susnetproperties.com

251.543.1370

Father’s Day 2019 – Gulf Shores – Great Places to Dine and Bushwacker Crawl

Father’s Day 2019 – Gulf Shores – Great Places to Dine and Bushwacker Crawl

Father’s Day 2019 is coming up and you’re planning a weekend getaway to the beach in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan to celebrate Dad.  What an awesome idea! Weekends seem to fly by down here, and we tend to spend so much trying to decide where to eat and what to drink that time can just get away.  Sometimes in haste, we can make bad decisions and end up regretting our choices.  To help you make your food and beverage choices easy, I decided to put together this blog highlighting some of my local faves.

Here are some great places to dine during Father’s Day Weekend 2019 and then go on a Father’s Day Bushwacker Crawl.

  •  Breakfast

To begin with, let’s begin at the beginning of the day with breakfast.  And no breakfast blog is complete without mentioning Hazel’s Nook.  Hazel’s Nook, located at the intersection of Fort Morgan Road and Gulf Shores Parkway, has been nestled right there under those ancient oaks serving breakfast since we actually can’t remember when.  They have been there, no joke, somewhere in the neighborhood of 60 years.  And you don’t make it in a small beach town that long unless you’re doing something right.  Hazel’s Nook does breakfast right!  If a hot, home cooked breakfast buffet featuring fresh eggs served with a side of grits and home fries, great coffee, a fun staff, and a local place that has stood the test of time appeals to you, then you need to take Dad to Hazel’s Nook while you’re here.  And by the way…yes, the eggs really are that fresh and yes, there really was a Ms. Hazel!  Hazel’s Nook is located, like I said, in a great place.  It’s not too far from West Beach near 4 Shore, a fabulous beach home that’ll sleep up to eleven people! This West Beach home is located in Gulf Shores not far from another can’t-miss breakfast spot:  The Ruby Slipper Café.  And since you’ll be here for two mornings, I can’t leave them out of this blog, either.  Unlike Hazel’s, The Ruby Slipper Café, located on Beach Boulevard in Orange Beach, is not a buffet style restaurant.  Instead, it’s a go-inside, sit-down and relax-and-chat kind of place.  When you first arrive, you’ll find the staff is so accommodating while you wait.  And you’re probably going to have to wait for a few minutes for a table.  But do it!  It’s worth it!  So, once you get your table, what do you order?  Choosing what to have at The Ruby Slipper is challenging for all of us.  That’s why I always seem to settle on thePeaceMaker.  This appropriately named breakfast entrée allows you to “make peace” with your tummy and mind and just have two entrees in one!  I like the Eggs Cochon paired with the Shrimp Boogaloo Benedict.  These are two totally different breakfast entrees and they go great together.  And don’t forget to have a couple of cups of their coffee.  I prefer at least one of those to be an Irish Coffee, but that’s just me.  Their coffee tastes like NOLA in a cup.  It’s some of the best I’ve ever had, and I drink a lot of coffee!  If you’d like something sweet for breakfast, try the Bananas Foster Pain Perdu.  This is an island favorite and it’s hard to make a trip down here and not have Bananas Foster at least once.  If Dorothy, herself, found her way to Gulf Shores, Orange Beach or Fort Morgan, she’d definitely find herself dining at The Ruby Slipper.  Don’t miss an opportunity to treat Dad to The Ruby Slipper while you’re in town!  There may be no place like home, but Dad will certainly thank you for taking him out for breakfast at two or our beach home faves:  Hazel’s Nook and The Ruby Slipper Cafe.

  •  Lunch

Located on Fort Morgan Road about five minutes from Navy Cove 2113, Dunes 705 and Dream, Sassy Bass Amazin’ Grill is a great place to go for lunch.  The service is outstanding, the drinks are refreshingly chilled, and the food is amazing.  While Sassy Bass is a great place to take the whole family for dinner, I strongly suggest trying them for lunch, as well.  The atmosphere is great for families or a couple of friends just hanging out.  Dine inside or on their screened porch.  The super friendly staff will be happy to seat you where you’re comfortable.  And their menu item choices are sure to please anyone.  With food for both land and sea lovers, there is something for everyone at Sassy Bass.  Their burgers are piled high with perfectly cooked beef and smothered with the freshest of toppings.  Their seafood po-boys are literally overflowing with seafood and toppings, and their hand cut fries are a comfort food like none other.  If you choose to have a salad, try the vinaigrette dressing.  It is zippy sweet summery taste of yum and it seems to make the taste of the veggies sort of pop.  I can’t let their slaw go without mentioning either.  If you like the old timey Pool Room Slaw, you are going to love Sassy Bass’s slaw.  It is served in a quarter cup size side cup, but you’re gonna want a whole-big-ole-bowl of it. And, if an adult beverage appeals to you, try one of their signature fishbowl drinks.  I’d love to make a recommendation on which one, after all, there are quite a few. But I just can’t choose one fave.  They are all great!  If non-alcoholic drinks are your choice, they have plenty of those to choose from, too.

  •  Dinner

We covered breakfast and lunch.  So, what about dinner?  Or as we affectionately call it in South Alabama:  supper.  Where are you going to take Dad for supper?  Suppertime down here at the beach is one of our favorite times of the day.  It’s a time when we all sit down together and talk about our day.   Dinner is usually around 7PM or so, but supper can happen most any time after lunch.  If you choose to stop mid-to-late afternoon and eat, then it’s Lupper!  But, no matter what you choose to call it, just make sure you call Fin & Fork in Orange Beach and make a reservation for it.  While reservations are not required, I do suggest making one.  This place is so good and so conveniently located on Beach Boulevard in Orange Beach not too far from Grand Caribbean 215, they are packed most all the time.  You can choose to eat outside at a picnic area, on their screened-in porch or inside the restaurant.  Regardless of which area you choose, try the grouper.  It’s not called “Local’s Favorite Grouper” for nothing.  You’ll get a huge helping of fresh panko (that yummy bready stuff they put on fish) covered grouper topped with a mushroom and crab sauce that’s been placed delicately and deliciously inside a cabbage leaf.  Oh-Em-Gee!  It’s one of the prettiest plates of food that’ll ever be laid in front of you and the taste is just as Oh-em-gee-able.  You’ll probably just sit there and admire it for a minute before you taste it.  If you’re like most, you’ll have the urge to snap a picture of it and Facebook post it.  But try to refrain.  Posting your food on Facebook, according to most millennials, is so last year.  But then…. there’s always SnapChat!  Picture this:  alongside your grouper, you’ll get these perfectly seasoned whole green beans and whipped Yukon gold mashed potatoes.  The sweetness of the potatoes and the zingy-ness of the green beans is a perfect pairing for the fish.  If your Dad is more of fried fish guy, try the Whole Fried Snapper.  Our Alabama Gulf Coast is famous for our great Snapper Seasons, and Fin & Fork is celebrated for their Whole Fried Snapper.   Also, while you’re there, order some Sushi.  You might not expect to get great Sushi in Orange Beach, but you will!  Fin & Fork has a great Sushi Chef preparing Sushi to order.   Take Dad to Fin & Fork for his Father’s Day Dinner, Supper, Lupper or all three.  He’ll thank you for it!

  •  Bushwacker Crawl

No trip to the Alabama Gulf Coast is complete with a Bushwacker.  So why not take Dad on a Father’s Day Bushwacker Crawl? (which, by the way, I just invented for this blog!)  Why do we affectionately call it a “crawl”?  Well, when you have your first Bushwacker, the answer is not so obvious.  But by the time Dad tries all three Bushwackers I suggest here, he might need some help walking.   Hence the name:  crawl.  Remember, someone sober must drive Dad so he can enjoy his outing.  If everyone in your group wants to try these, I strongly suggest you plan ahead and contact a taxi to drive you.  Uber and Lyft are not available in our area, but this link will give you lots of choices for local drivers.  While we love our Bushwackers down here, safety is always our first concern.  Drink responsibly and let someone else drive!  For your first stop, take Dad to Anchor Bar & Grill located off Canal Road on Wilson Boulevard in Orange Beach.  I say start your crawl here, because they make unique and specialty Bushwackers.  While most Bushwacker bartenders use rum, the good folks at the Anchor Bar & Grill use Vodka.  It’s a great twist on an old favorite and they are soooo good!   And, by the way, so is the view from Anchor Bar & Grill.  It overlooks beautiful Terry Cove in Orange Beach.  While you guys enjoy your first taste of frozen goodness on your Father’s Day Bushwacker Crawl, you’ll get to watch seagulls play and maybe even catch a glimpse of a dolphin or two.  You’re also almost guaranteed to see our local pirate ship that docks right outside the Anchor Bar & Grill at Hudson Marina.  Maybe you could even squeeze in a Pirate Cruise while you’re down.  Your second stop on your Father’s Day Bushwacker Crawl needs to be Flippers Seafood & Oysterbar located at Bear Point Marina, just a bit down Canal Road from The Keg (which is a great place to highlight in another blog!)  Bushwackers at Flippers are worth the drive.  While you’re there, go ahead and have some oysters on the half shell, too.  Oysters go so good with Bushwackers!  Flippers has a wonderful full menu.  If raw oysters aren’t your thing, I know there is something on their menu that will make your tummy smile!  The last place I’ll suggest for a great Bushwacker is Tacky Jacks in Gulf Shores.  Head back from Flippers toward Gulf Shores on Canal Road, and just keep going.  Right where the road makes a sharp (really sharp!) left, you’ll find Tacky Jacks.  Tacky Jacks overlooks the intracoastal waterway.  I’d like to suggest an appetizer to go with your Tacky Jacks Bushwacker, but everything on their menu is a winner.  So, I’ll leave this one to you.  By now, you should know why we call this little outing a crawl.  While I hope you guys are having a great time on your Father’s Day Bushwacker Crawl, I can’t stress enough the importance of a sober driver and the willingness of locals in the transportation industry to help you out.  Don’t drink and drive.  But if you’re having a good time on this little crawl, and want to keep it going, check out our blog on 5 Best Bushwackers to give you some suggestions on a couple more places to try!

I hope this blog helps make your decisions on where to take Dad for food and drink easier than you expect.  You know, at Sunset Properties, we celebrate families.  We are a family owned, family-oriented company.  We are flattered that you are planning to spend a weekend with us celebrating your Dad this Father’s Day 2019 with us and we hope you’ll plan a week later this summer to celebrate your whole family and stay with us again!

www.sunsetproperties.com

251.543.1370

Have a safe and happy Father’s Day Weekend and Summer 2019!

Drinking and Driving – A Threat to Everyone. Every day, almost 30 people in the United States die in motor vehicle crashes that involve an alcohol-impaired driver. This amounts to one death every 51 minutes. Driving drunk is never OK. Choose not to drink and drive and help others do the same.” CDC

5 Amazing April Family Outings You Must Do in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan

5 Amazing April Family Outings You Must Do in Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan

Have you ever thought about visiting the Alabama Gulf Coast in April?  Spring Break is over and summer hasn’t quite yet arrived.  The beaches are warming up and the Gulf is usually quite serene.  Flowers are blooming all around our island paradise and the sugar white sandy beaches of Gulf Shores, Orange Beach and Fort Morgan are definitely calling your name!  There is so much to do here in the Spring.  It’s hard to list them all, but here is a list of

5 amazing April family outings you must do when you’re down our way:

1.      Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail

Spend a day with your family walking or running the Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail.  With seven trails that traverse six different eco systems across fifteen miles, the trail has something for the whole family.  Be sure to visit the Pavilion and Butterfly Garden this spring.  Covered in brightly colored flowers, the garden is a butterfly haven.  Stop in at the pavilion and relax in the swing.  Be sure to bring your camera and take lots of pictures.  Memories made on the trail are meant to be shared!  Not too far from the trail, just down Fort Morgan Road, is Dream.  Dream is a seven bedroom, seven bath brand new Gulf front beach home.  Complete with its own pool, Dream is the place to stay if  you’re looking for a quiet evening and a relaxing swim after a long walk through the trail.  This tastefully decorated, fully stocked beach home truly is a dream come true.  We know you and your family will cherish all the memories you make this April in Gulf Shores and we know you will love staying with Sunset Properties in our newest rental, Dream.

2.      Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo

The Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo is one of our favorite outing spots any time of year.  It is especially nice in the spring.  The weather is just perfect and the animals are quite active.  While you’re at the zoo, but sure to check out the Gulf Coast Mining Company.  This fun new attraction at The Little Zoo That Could features old fashioned mining.  After the water washes away your sandy mixture, you’ll find gemstones, arrowheads and other fun items to take home with you.  What a great way to find one-of-a-kind souvenirs!  Family pictures with animals make great keepsakes photos!  You simply cannot go wrong with a day outing to our local zoo.  Each time you go, you’ll see and experience something new.  Located about ten minutes from the zoo, is Grand Caribbean 215. This two bedroom, two bath condo faces The Gulf of Mexico on Beach Boulevard in Gulf Shores.  After you and your family have enjoyed your zoo outing, you can walk right across the street to enjoy an afternoon on our pristine white sandy beaches.  Who knows?  You may just be able to add some colorful sea shells to your already wonderful collection of natural souvenirs.

3.      Orange Beach Waterfront Park

Located on Canal Road in Orange Beach, Orange Beach Waterfront Park is a kid’s outdoor paradise!  Parents will love it, too!  Designed for the whole family and overlooking Wolf Bay, Orange Beach Waterfront Park features a kid’s park area and an amazing 400 foot long pier.  There is no cost to enter the park and no reservations can be made.  The park has grills, pavilions and restrooms for public use.  This is truly the perfect place to plan a nice April family cookout or picnic.  About ten minutes away from the park, Enclave 206 is located on Beach Boulevard.  It is a three bedroom, three bath Gulf front condo that sleeps eight. Enclave 206 has plenty of room for your whole family to spread out.  This is the perfect place to come home to after you’ve spent a day outside in the beautiful April sun.  

4.      Gulf State Park Pier

Another great family venue located near Grand Caribbean 215 is our Alabama Gulf State Park Pier.  The State Park Pier has an amazing 2448 feet of rail space.  That’s a lot of room for fishermen!  There is also indoor seating for concessions.  The pier is open all day every day, but there is a small fee to enter.  There are comfort stations and a bait shop.   Whether you visit  the Gulf State Park Pier  just to sight see or fish, you will enjoy one of the best views of The Gulf of Mexico as you gaze over the pier rails to see the water and wildlife below.  Have some ice cream and take lots of pictures.  This is one family outing your whole family will enjoy.  Take a sneak peak of the pier by clicking on their webcam here.  Spring is one of the best times to walk out on the pier.  The sea breeze is nice and the weather is warm.  Don’t miss your chance to experience this unique family venue!

5.      Hummingbird Zipline Course

Thrill seekers who visit the Alabama Gulf Coast in April will love The Hummingbird Zipline.  Located at The Wharf in Orange Beach, the Hummingbird Zipline will thrill everyone!  With speeds up to 30 miles per hour and heights up to 115 feet, this Alabama Gulf Coast attraction remains one of our all time favorite outdoor activities.  The zipline tour takes about two hours and flies over protected wetlands, the intracoastal waterway and even the bays that surround The Wharf.  What a great way to see nature!  Another great way to see nature is from the deck of The Boathouse, located on Fort Morgan Road.    This uniquely designed beach home is a venue all on its own.  The Boathouse has two bedrooms and two bathrooms and is a dog friendly beach home.  It is located right on Mobile Bay and has unmatched views.  So when you’re done zipping around at The Wharf, come on home to your own special spot in a beach home like no other.

The weather in April in Gulf Shores is amazing!  Orange Beach is begging to be visited and Fort Morgan is just a short drive away.  Go ahead, plan a weekend getaway to our fun little beach paradise.  The crowds are smaller than in the summer and the Spring Breakers have all gone back to school.  Pack up the kiddos and even bring your dog to one of our many dog friendly beach homes and don’t miss an opportunity to experience our beach in the Spring.  And, hey, if the April Showers start, we, at Sunset Properties,  have a blog for that, too!  We’ll see you soon!

www.sunsetproperties.com

251.543.1370